Iraq’s $13bn budget deficit will be covered DFI fund

08/05/2012 13:23 BAGHDAD, May 8 (AKnews) – The money retained in the Development Fund of Iraq will cover the deficit in this year’s federal budget.

The Finance Committee in the Iraqi council of Representatives made the assurance today, adding that the deficit calculated is only an approximation.

Last February, the Iraqi Council of Representatives approved the 2012 budget of around $100bn (116.5tr IQD) and at a deficit of up to $12.6bn (14.7tr IQD).

The Development Fund of Iraq (DFI) was established on May 2003 by the Interim Coalition Authority and it was recognized according to the UN Security Council resolution.

The Iraqi authorities authorized Washington to manage the DFI, after Interim Coalition disbanded, from June 2004 until December 31, 2007.

Committee member Najiba Najib said: “The deficit in this year’s budget is an approximation and is not real and will not affect the total amount of the federal budget.

“The retained money in the DFI is enough to cover the deficit.”

Iraqi authorities say that money was spent from the DFI while under the management of the U.S. government after 2003 and their fate is unknown.

U.S. officials acknowledged last June the disappearance of $6.6bn (7.7tr IQD) from the Reconstruction of Iraq Fund, but Iraqis claimed that about $17bn (19.8tr IQD) was lost and stolen by American institutions.